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Saturday, 31 August 2019

A New Kind of Loneliness

Michael Weston King is an English Americana/country singer who has enjoyed a solo  career as well as having been the main man in The Good Sons and who is now one half of the country duo My Darling Clementine with his wife Lou Dalgleish.
His 7th solo album A New Kind of Loneliness from 2007 and on the Floating World label.was my second recent charity shop purchases.
I'm pretty sure that I have seen him a couple of times in the early 2000's when he was somewhat more hairy.
I have a couple of his songs on compilations but this is the first of his that I have ever owned.
I'm not sure whether to file it under W or K. Given there is no hyphen I'm thinking K

The album contains what I think may be a first for CCM - a Gilbert O'Sullivan cover!
Confession time and here is where I loose the little credibility that I have left.As a young lad I was a huge Gilbert O'Sullivan fan and even kept a scrapbook full of cuttings!
I'll get my coat

Michael Weston King -Here's the Plan

Michael Weston King - Alone Again Naturally

Friday, 30 August 2019

Going Back Home

Mrs CC is currently having a bit of a clear out. This involves countless trips to the tip and to charity shops.
She made a school girl error the other day when she was content to sit in the car while I struggled into the charity shop weighed down by a large mirror and two large bags of clothes.
I was there longer than she anticipated as my instincts kicked in and I felt obliged to check out the CDs.
I came away a pound lighter but two CDs heavier.

One was Going Back Home by Wilko Johnson and Roger Daltry on the mighty Chess label. It has featured here before . Previously my brother had lent me it and  I thought that I had it on the shelves. It turns out that I downloaded it but never got round to producing a physical copy. That has now been sorted.

Maybe not the oddest of couples apparently they bonded after sitting next to each other at an awards ceremony and finding that they shared a mutual love for Johnny Kidd & the Pirates

Wilko Johnson & Roger Daltrey - Sneaking Suspicion

Wilko Johnson & Roger Daltry - All Through the City

Thursday, 29 August 2019

Neal Casal R.I.P.

It was really sad to read that Americana singer and guitarist Neal Casal has taken his own life at the age of just 50.
I saw him play as a solo artist on a number of occasions and as a guitarist with Lucinda Williams.
He was also a member of Hazy Mallaze and then one of Ryan Adam's Cardinals. He subsequently played guitar with both Hard Working Americans and  the Chris Robinson Brotherhood.

For those interested in his solo work the anthology Leaving Traces: Songs 1994-2004 is a good place to start. On hearing the sad news the first album I reached for was 2000's Anytime Tomorrow on the Glitterhouse label and the song Willow Jane.
A fine singer and song writer and a great guitarist.

Rest easy Neal

Neal Casal - Willow Jane

Hazy Mallaze - Chicago Blondes

Wednesday, 28 August 2019

State of the Union - Maryland

George writes:
Yes, it’s a Panhandle State!

If you were to travel directly west from where we live the first state of the USA you would reach would be Maryland. 

Baltimore is in Maryland. I believe that when Lincoln was on his way to Washington DC to take up residence there he travelled through Baltimore at night to avoid possible assassination. And Baltimore is the setting of the tv show “Homicide: Life On The Streets”, which ran for 7 series. SEVEN? Man Alive, there’s over TWENTY of Midsomer Murders! Ten of that complete balderdash Stargate SG1. Just what is the world coming to? Not only is Homicide Life On The Streets very well scripted, it invariably features great songs in every episode. And it’s opening tune is by Miles Davis.  Watching it now (that and Due South when we stay at the farm) I am struck by how much less macho posing, fewer ridiculous action scenes (car chases, violence), there are compared to (no, not Midsomer Murders) Chicago PD or the Chicago Fire, for example.

In series one of Homicide: Life On The Streets, Ned Beatty was often sporting a tangerine and black scarf. I got terribly excited, thinking that someone involved in the show was a Dundee United fan and had somehow sneaked the scarf on the set. Alas no, it’s a Baltimore Orioles scarf.

The state itself is named after Henrietta Maria, wife of Charles I of England, Scotland and Ireland. For some inane reason the obvious choices of Henriettaland, Henriettania, and Henriettucky were all rejected.

Did you know that 80s synthpop band Go West have a song called Baltimore to Paris? Did you know that Twiggy duetted with Tim “If I were a carpenter” Hardin? No? Here you are:

Time for Gram Parsons, and his always slightly vulnerable-sounding vocal, and of course a fine country song:

Maryland has a total area of just over 30 000 km2, making it just less than a thirtieth of the size of the west African country of Mauritania.

Next song is by the Counting Crows. I have just listened to, and I kid you not, a song that goes “good morning, Baltimore, each day’s like on open door, every night is a fantasy, every sound’s like a symphony”. ALso, the offering by the ex Mr Julia Roberts is rejected.

Looking at the shape of the state I wondered if it had a panhandle (as mentioned in the Florida article). And it does! At number 6 (out of 10) in the chart of Best American Panhandles, according to National Geographic. The panhandle bit of Maryland contains the site of the Battle of Antietam.

I looked up famous people from Maryland, and in the Only In Your State website’s top 20, at least ELEVEN were not born there. But there are some notable people who were born there, such as David Hasselhof. And some more infamous, such as mudrerer John Wilkes Booth and the convicted felon and morally obtuse ex-vice-president Spiro Agnew.  Maryland is the birthplace of record producer and SideShow Bob lookalike Adam Duritz.

No, that is NOT SideShow Bob.

And track 2 is from the second Jayhawks album Blue Earth, and it’s almost as good as the Gram Parsons track:

Baltimore is the birthplace of famous moothie-player Larry Adler.  And it is the city in which it is illegal to take a lion to the cinema. Tigers? Yes, Leopards? No problem. Panthers? Of course. Lions? FORGET IT!.

That’s Maryland. Another one next week. And you might be in for a musical surprise.

CC writes:
Bugger - I had the Jayhawks lined up or failing that Bobby Bare's version of The Streets of Baltimore.
Here's Plan C

Tuesday, 27 August 2019

Seven Up

When putting Jason & the Scorchers back on the shelves I noticed that there were some James albums in close proximity(Vinyl is alphabetical, CDs are  alphabetical by genre)
Whilst I've never been a huge fan of the band I seem to have acquired their first five albums from Whalley Range's finest over the years.
Somewhat strangely only album five Laid has graced these pages before.
So using some reverse chronology today I am featuring their fourth album 1992's Seven on the Fontana label..Those looking at the image above will have probably worked  that out..

It maybe sounds a wee bit dated but it was good to give it a spin again. For your listening pleasure here are the 2nd and 4th singles from the album.

Third, second and first albums to follow in due course.

James - Born of Frustration

James - Seven

Monday, 26 August 2019

A Splendid Racket - Live Through This

For whatever reason I'm struggling for motivation for this series. So if this to be the last offering there is a certain symmetry given that it started with Kurt and ended with Courtney.
From 1994 Live Through This on DCG in the States and City Slang in Europe was Hole's second album and easily their best known and most commercially successful in no small part due to the fact that it was released one week after Kurt Cobain's suicide.The release date did little to endear  his widow Courtney Love to many Nirvana fans.
Spin, an American music magazine wrote Live Through This is both a scruffier and more commercial record than Pretty on the Inside. The angsty rants of yore remain, but they're decorated with a lot more poetry
For the purposes of this series I've gone for two of the more angsty rants.

Hole - Violet

Hole - Jennifer's Body

Sunday, 25 August 2019

Vintage Country Vinyl - Johnny Horton

Another case from the Country Vinyl haul of a different record in the sleeve to the one advertised on the cover.
So instead of Johnny Horton's Greatest Hits today you are getting 1965's I Can't Forget You on the Columbia label.
The man who wrote Honky -Tank Man which of course was brilliantly covered by  Dwight Yoakam.
Nothing of that standard on this one which sadly is not in the best of condition.
Out in New Mexico would possibly have replaced Dean Owen's New Mexico on George's State of the Union series had I had it at the time.
This is followed by a slightly more mellow version of Lost Highway than the one from Jason & the Scorchers yesterday.

More of the same next Sunday.

Johnny Horton - Out in New Mexico

Johnny Horton - Lost Highway

Saturday, 24 August 2019

Lost & Found

I picked up Lost & Found the 1995 debut album by cowpunks Jason & the Scorchers on EMI America a couple of months ago. I'm not quite sure why it has taken me so long to post it.
Critically acclaimed at the time but commercially unsuccessful (like many of the other albums on the shelves). One theory was that they were too country for the rock radio stations in the States and too rocky for country radio. There may be an element of truth in that given that on the album cover two of them are in country clobber and two looking a bit more rockier.

They have a reputation as a really good live band. Unfortunately I've never seen them but I have seen the main man Jason Ringenberg live on a couple of occasions. He is most definitely country.

I've gone for Shop it Around and a scorching version of the Leon Payne classic Lost Highway - did you see what I did there.?

Jason & the Scorchers - Shop It Around

Jason & the Scorchers - Lost Highway

Friday, 23 August 2019

Covered by Candi

Over the last week of so JC  has given up a couple of posts featuring various covers of two seminal sings namely In the Ghetto and Jolene. On both occasions in the comments section Drew championed the versions by the great Candi Staton.

This has led to me giving Candi an airing and in particular the 2004 eponymous compilation of her country soul songs from the late 60's/early 70's on the Honest Jon's label.
In includes her version of In the Ghetto but unfortunately Jolene does not feature. There is however an able substitute in the shape of her version of the Tammy Wynette classic Stand By Your Man.

Candi Staton - In the Ghetto

Candi Staton - Stand By Your Man

Thursday, 22 August 2019

A Splendid Racket .... for Blur

For a brief moment I thought about featuring Blur by Blur on Monday but it didn't quite tick all the boxes. Nevertheless it is indeed a splendid racket .. for Blur.
From 1997 Blur was their fifth album and arguably their last great one. Although a bit more experimental than some of their previous efforts it still  enjoyed a fair degree of commercial success with the lead single Beetlebum reaching number one and Song 2 appropriately peaking at number two.

It got me thinking about bands releasing eponymous albums which are not their debut and whether this is egotistical nonsense. Maybe I'm reading too much into it and they just couldn't think of a better name.

The makings of a potential series here.Without giving it too much thought I was able to come up with a 2nd album, a 4th , a 9th  and a 14th  which also meet this criteria. I then thought that I should actually do some work. There are others out there

Blur - Beetlebum

Blur - Song 2

Blur - Death of a Party

Wednesday, 21 August 2019

State of the Union - Michegan

George writes:
At first all I could think about for this state was: 1. Lake Michigan. 2. Flint (the city), and 3. Album of the same name by Sufjan Stevens.  .

There was a film about Flint a few years, about the affect the closure of  car-factories had on the city and its people. From 80 000 employees in 1970, General Motors had maybe 7, 200 in 2015. Looking at the population changes of the city it has suffered a rather catastrophic fall in population over 50 years, from just over 190 000 in 1970 to about 96 000 today. And Flint has been in the news in the past few years because its water source is so unsafe “Flint residents were instructed to use only bottled or filtered water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, and bathing” (from wikipedia) due to a poor water treatment resulting in lead leaching into the supply from pipes- And Flint is one of the most dangerous cities (in the top ten of cities > 75 000)............................... I no longer work for the FTA (Flint Tourist Authority).....

On to cheerier matters. Convicted felon and “"the greatest scab and cancer on the face of Christianity in 2,000 years of church historyJim Bakker was born in Muskegon, Michigan.  Well, that was how Jerry Falwell described Mr Bakker, and Jerry would know!

(Fifty per cent of the people in that picture are felons)

After that heart-lifting introduction, time for some music. Kid Rock (not his real name, and he is a middle-aged name now not a youth) is a musician I am not familiar with,and after listening to 50 seconds of his “Detroit, Michigan” it will remain that way. Instead, here’s a splendid cover of “Detroit City”. Just listen to that piano at the start, that familiar voice skewing the vowels….

How can Jerry Lee Lewis’s vocal not cheer you up?

I had to research Michigan to realise Detroit is in the state. And to cut a long story short, there ARE some musicians who do not come from Detroit.
I also listened to 100 seconds of Detroit City by Kiss.  Other relevant songs rejected by the GTP are by Blondie, Ian Hunter, Primal Scream, The J. Geils Band, Texas, Alice Cooper, The White Stripes, Wayne Kramer,  and Smokey Robinson & The Miracles. (GTP are the George Taste Police.) 

(above: Stevland Hardaway Judkins, born in Saginaw, Michigan,)

The GTP did listen to the Joe Strummer song, and it was quite liked. And 25 seconds of the utter shite offered by Suzi Quatro. And the entirety of the Big Bill Broonzy offering, which sadly had to be rejected because the title refers to a train. And Lefty Frizzell’s song is also excluded.

Second song, and it is this utterly brilliant offering from the obvious album (Romulus is a 
large suburb of Detroit.):

Mr. Stevens was born in Detroit.

No place for the song that I thought was covered by Lulu, but wasn’t. (she covered Watch That Man).

That’s Michigan, where any 12-year old (or older) can have a gun license as long as they are not a convicted felon.
That’s Michigan, where in Harper Woods it is illegal to paint a sparrow and sell it as a parakeet.
That’s Michigan, birthplace of Madonna (not the mother of Jesus, the other one).

Another state next week.

CC writes: Not quite sure why Lefty was excluded. I'm including him

Lefty Frizzell - Saginaw, Michegan

Tuesday, 20 August 2019

Autumn Fallin'

You may recall that after featuring You'd Rather Run by Jaymay recently I undertook to track down the 2007 album Autumn Fallin' on which it featured.
I'm happy to feedback that that mission has now been accomplished.
With the exception of one song which features a bit of jazz noodling the album is pretty good and well worth having .There is nothing as good as You'd Rather Run obviously.

It was not until 2016 that she followed it up with To Tell the Truth followed by a Christmas album Fallin' Like Snow.
I was all set to make comments on the gap between the records until I read that she has Crohn's Disease and also had to deal with the death of her sister.

Jaymay - Gray or Blue

Jaymay - Autumn' Fallin'

Monday, 19 August 2019

A Splendid Racket - S.A.H.B.

When it comes to a Splendid Racket the Sensational Alex Harvey Band are up there with the best of them.
However unlike some others who are full on from the get go the band liked to build things up gradually ending  with a crescendo as was only fitting when there was a showman like Alex leading the line.
Alex Harvey started off playing jazz and skiffle  before moving on to blues and rock'n'roll winning a competition as Scotland's answer to Tommy Steele in the process prior to becoming a cast member in the musical Hair.He was constantly reinventing himself a la David Bowie
Somwhow I can't imagine Tommy  belting out Next or appearing on stage with a clown faced Zal Clemenson

Sadly Alex died  of a heart attack in 1982 the day before his 47th birthday en route to a  gig in Zeebrugge. He remains a Glasgow legend
Drummer Ted McKenna died in January aged 68. As far as I am aware the rest of the classic line up - Zal Clmenson (guitar), Chris Glen (bass) and Hugh McKenna (keyboards) are still with us

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band - The Faith Healer

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band - Boston Tea Party

Talking of Splendid Rackets I went to see Domiciles supported by Slime City on Friday at the Old Hairdressers at a Last Night from Glasgow Gig
Domiciles have  hints of throbbing krautrock & dreamy shoegaze (LNFG) about them whereas Slime City were the loudest band I've seen in many a year. They were quite bouncy with shades of Devo and Bis (Manda Rin was there cheering them on)

Sunday, 18 August 2019

Vintage Country Vinyl - Hank Snow

Q: What do The Charlatans and Hank Snow have in common?
A: I've bought albums by both only to find that they actually contain a different album by them than the one on the sleeve.

Yes although the sleeve suggests that the album from the haul was 1962's The One and Only Hank Snow it is in fact 1963's The Last Ride. Nothing to lose sleep over as I  suspect that they are probably much of a muchness. Plus I think I got the better cover

A Canadian, Hank had a career spanning over 50 years recording around 140 albums. I wonder if his career would have ever got off the ground had he recorded under his actual name of Clarence Eugene Snow- it doesn't quite have the same ring about it.

There used to be a dodgy pub called The Tradewinds in Speirsbridge Rd, Thornliebank. Like many pubs on Glasgow's South Side it has since been replaced by flats

More of the same next Sunday although I think I'll give you a break from wall to wall Country tomorrow

Hank Snow - Why Do You Punish Me (For Loving You)

Hank Snow -Message From the Tradewinds

Saturday, 17 August 2019

Walking the Line

For me the best parts of Johnny Cash's career were the beginning and the end.
I'm sure that I have waxed lyrical  on more than one occasion about his collaboration  with Rick Ruben at the twilight of his career which gave us the magnificent six American Recordings albums.

Today we focus on the early years. The other day Mrs CC came in with the three disc box set Walking the Line: The Legendary Sun Recordings. However it was already on the shelves and it has therefore gone to the charity shop today.
Before it went it seemed churlish not to feature a great song from each of the three discs which were recorded between 1955 and 1958.
Where as the box says  the Man in Black created and perfected the timeless,pared-down and plain spoken sound that would make him a legend.

Johnny Cash - I Walk the Line

Johnny Cash -Straight A's in Love

Johnny Cash - Oh Lonesome Me

Friday, 16 August 2019

A Hundred Miles Off

My plan to save space by returning charity shop compilations after culling the better songs isn't quite working.
It has been leading me to buy albums from some of the artists who grabbed my attention.
Last week it was the turn of The Beauty Shop
This time around it is another American indie band The Walkmen.

I was quite taken by Lost in Boston  on a Now Hear This! compilation from October 2006.
On the back of this I  then picked up a copy of A Hundred Miles Off the album from whence it came.

On the first listen I wasn't too sure about it. After a second listen I'm pretty much hooked. The splendidly named singer Hamilton Leithauser has an interesting vocal style; shouty on some occasions, Dylanesque on others.
Seven albums released between 2002 and 2012 with the band  currently on hiatus pursuing solo careers.
And indeed a splendid racket on occasions. More exploration clearly required.

The Walkmen -Good For You's Good For Me

The Walkmen -Don't Get Me Down (Come On Over Here)

Thursday, 15 August 2019

Tenement & Temple

Tenement & Temple are an acoustic duo from Glasgow.namely Monica Queen and Johnnie Smillie formerly of Thrum fame and currently members of the Gracious Losers.

The ethereal voiced Monica also enjoyed a solo career and collaborated with a number of bands including Belle & Sebastian where she provided vocals on Lazy Line Painter. I'm pretty sure I saw her perform at King Tuts as a support act to someone many moons ago.

Their eponymous album is a thing of beauty. Ten tracks , nine of which are their own with the final track being a cover of Blue Moon
Available to buy on their own Thrum Records over at bandcamp
If you buy a physical copy of the CD it comes in a lovely cardboard eco sleeve along with a personalised thank you card from the band.

You know what to do.

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

State of the Union - Hawaii

George writes:
The instrument commonly associated with this state was introduced here by some Portuguese, from the island of Madeira, the machete (one is pictured above). This does not translate as axe, the portuguese word for axe is machado. My partner has two axes. She also has a banjo and two acoustic guitars. She has no ukuleles. As for music, has anyone else recently listened to Blue Hawaii? Well  I have - George, listening to terrible songs so you don’t have to. I do not think Abba have featured ever on the pages of Charity Chic Music, and their song Happy Hawaii will be maintaining that record.

First song, by Neko Case, and this is not one to play (seriously, it’s not) if you’re feeling even the slightest bit melancholy.

Some quite famous people were born in Hawaii: Bette Middler (quite famous), Nicole Kidman (famous), and the 44th president of the USA was famously born in Hawaii. “Dog The Bounty Hunter” was not born in this state. Rather sadly,  I know who he is, his TV show is shown here just after Judge Judy. But Duane, or “Dog” as he is better known, lived in Hawaii, but not now.

A speciality of Hawaiian cuisine is a sort of Spam sushi! Fried Spam, on rice, wrapped in seaweed.  It has been described, not all pretentiously, as a fusion of the cuisine of immigrant groups and military personnel. Fried Spam on rice, a “fusion”. FFS! They call it “Spam musubi”. 

You can get a plate of “crazy snot” in Hawaii. Basically rice with a hamburger on tip, gravy and a fried egg.Well, to Spanish speakers, “Loco moco” translates as “crazy snot”.

The Beach Boys’ song Hawaii will not be available on this page, it’s one of those filler tracks they churned out by the hundreds in their pre Pet Sounds years. And sadly the Johnny Cash cover of Aloha Oe cannot be included because Aloha is not a town or city in Hawaii. 

But  another country legend can be included, Jimmie Rodgers. It’s been commented before on this blog that there is not enough yodelling featuring here. Time to rectify that!

In my search for strange laws of this state one site found it strange that in Hawaii you are not allowed to fish by dynamite, poison, or electric current.

That’s Hawaii. Another one next week.

CC writes: ABBA have appeared here twice.
Not sure if this song meets George's strict criteria

John Prine - Let's Talk Dirty in Hawaiian

If not here is plan B

Tuesday, 13 August 2019

The Three EP's

I've just checked and I have previously featured three songs by The Beta Band on these pages none of which were from The Three EPs
As the name suggests a compilation of their first three EPs and one which attained legendary status when referenced in the film High Fidelity.
Prior to this it already had a degree of cult status following it's release in 1988.
I bought the CD compilation after I had read Songs in the Key of Fife by Vic Galloway
As I said in the comments after a first listen my head was completely scrambled but in a good way.
I can't say that I play it very often but I'm glad it's on the shelves. It should be on yours.

One from each of the EP's for you.
Thanks to High Fidelity you will all be familiar with Dry the Rain from the first EP Champion Versions
From the second EP The Patty Patty Sound here is over 8 minutes of weirdness entitled She's The One
Finally from the third EP Los Amigos Del Beta Banditos I give you the the final track Needles in my Eyes.

The Beta Band - Dry The Rain

The Beta Band - She's The One

The Beta Band - Needles in My Eyes

Monday, 12 August 2019

The Felice Brothers

The Felice Brothers are a band whose name has crossed my radar on many occasions but one who I know relatively little about and don't have much music by.
I've a few of their songs downloaded or on compilations and also songs by former member Simone Felice either under his own name or as The Duke and the King.

They have been really  prolific  since their debut album Iantown  in 2005 with 16 albums at the last count ie averaging at more than one per year
The only one I have is 2014's Favorite Waitress on the Dualtone album and even then it is a burn. I gave it a listen in the car last week and to be honest I was fairly underwhelmed.
Pleasant enough but nothing startling and certainly nothing to make me rush out and track down some more of their stuff although I suspect that some of them will probably be better. Most reviews seem to to give it around 3 out of 5 which is about right.

I would take marks of for their spelling of Favourite and Liquorice given that I am from this side of the pond.

The Felice Brothers - Cherry Licorice

The Felice Brothers - Woman Next Door

Apologies for the absence of A Spendid Racket today - my head is still all over the place with the  Muso Room disruption

Sunday, 11 August 2019

Vintage Country Vinyl - Loretta Lynn & Conway Twitty

The new window is now in the Muso Room but has still to be varnished.
This means that the vinyl is still stacked up in the Living Romm.

Fortunately Feelins' a 1975 duet album by Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty was at the front of one of the many piles thus allowing this weeks Vintage Country Vinyl to be posted.
Loretta and Conway both made appearances in the first iteration of this series but this is the first time that they have features as a duo.
I wasn't aware that they were an established double act but it turns out that they released ten albums together with this one being the fifth.There were a further seven best offs/compilations for good measures.

The album cover features the most hair since Rainbow appeared on these pages. (You will note I did not use the word graced)
More of the same next Sunday

Loretta Lynn & Conway Twitty - You Done Lost Your Baby

Loretta Lynn & Conway Twitty - Store Up Love

Thursday, 8 August 2019

Yard Sale Blues

With the dribs and drabs of my birthday money I decided to explore a few artists who have briefly crossed my path in the last few months in a bit more detail.
One such act were The Beauty Shop from Champaign, Illinois who came to my attention when their song Nightcrawlers appeared on a Word compilation which I bought in St Andrews fairly recently.

A quick trip to Discogs showed that their albums are readily available and at very reasonable prices.
The compilation album Yard Sale  seemed the sensible one to pick up.
It's not bad at all; pretty good in fact. I've opted for I've Got Issues and Paper Hearts for Rosie today for your listening pleasure.
The vocals of John Hoffleur remind me of someone but I'm not quite sure who. The Walkmen and White Hassle spring to mind but I'm sure there is someone else much more obvious.
Hoffleur is joined by Arianne Peralta on bass and a regular rotation of drummers.

Curiosity sated - in a good way.

The Beauty Shop - I Got Issues

The Beauty Shop - Paper Hearts For Rosie

Nothing to see here for a few days.
The Muso Room is getting it's window replaced so is in a bit of disarray.
The albums are piled up in the living room and a couple of the CD towers have had to be moved.
Needless to say I'm a bit twitchy.

Wednesday, 7 August 2019

State of the Union - Missouri

George writes::

Today, it’s the state in first equal place in the “Which state of the USA borders the highest number of other states” competition. When this state was formally adopted into the USA, thousands upon thousands of African-Americans slaves fled there. Only for the state to be admitted to the union as a slave state. 

Americana group Nadine have a song called Dark Light, that is set in St Louis (Missouri). It does not, NOT, refer to the scottish beer called light (as opposed to heavy), or to the pub in Cowdenbeath called Wee Jimmies, that used to sell light light and dark light.

(Yes, that is indeed Wee Jimmies, Cowdenbeath)

I looked at the Ranker list of famous people from St Louis (that’s in Missouri, by the way) and was amazed that I had heard of 5 of the top 6. And that did not include the man who was Benson in the 1970s comedy Soap. One of the top 6 is the brother of Marvin Berry (Marvin Berry and The Starlighters, “Johnny B. Goode”, phone call “Hey Chuck, it’s your brother Marvin…….”, come on, do keep up). 

Rather confusingly, jazz saxophonist Charlie Parker was born in Kansas City, and raised in Kansas City. That is, Kansas City, Kansas, then Kansas City, Missouri. Which leads rather nicely to this song, about the correct Kansas City as far as this series goes:

That city is also the birthplace of Big Joe Turner.

Lonnie Johnson, although not born in St. Louis, or the state of Missouri, did live there. He witnessed a catastrophic weather event and wrote this song about it:

Anthony James Donegan borrowed that singer’s first name.

St. Louis gave us the company responsible for that disgusting “beer” B**w**s*r.

And St. Louis also gave us the most bizarre Olympic games, in 1904. Only 42 of the 91 events had athletes from countries other than the USA, the marathon was one by a bloke who hitched a ride in a car for ten of the 26 miles, and the entire games lasted over four months, holding one event a day.

The state of Missouri was the birthplace, and retirement place, of Harry S Truman. When he left the presidency, all he had to live on was an army pension of $112 a month, which is about $1100 a month today. From wikipedia: he did not wish to be on any corporate payroll, believing that taking advantage of such financial opportunities would diminish the integrity of the nation's highest office.  

That’s it. Another one next week-

CC writes: Low may be from Minnesota but they have a song called Missouri on their Secret Name album.

Low - Missouri